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The Modular Enterprise

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Just before setting off for Cisco Live I heard an economist on the radio talk about the relative performance of leading countries. The key measure was productivity: GDP per worked hour. Certainly historic outcomes are important but they do tend to provide a historic view.

As we accelerate into the digital revolution, I started to think about the best way to measure company performance. Critically, what might indicate future market leadership? Where should a company focus when it comes to communications and collaboration? What is core and what will enable leaders to set themselves apart from competitors?

I decided to spend some time at Cisco Live asking customers for their perspectives. I arrived in San Diego with a long list of potential items. But after John Chambers spoke about market disruption brought about by digitization, I came away with a simple model:  The Modular Enterprise. Read More »

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Can Your Customers Name Your Brand in Three Notes?

Drummer Bernard Purdie has played on over four thousand recordings in his fifty-year career. The self-proclaimed “Hitmaker”, he has recorded with Steely Dan, B.B. King, Hall and Oates, Miles Davis, and Louis Armstrong among many others. Included in his many contributions to music is his famous half-time “Purdie Shuffle”. You’ll hear it featured in such songs as Led Zeppelin’s “Fool in the Rain” and Toto’s “Rosanna”.

Check out Purdie explaining how he created his unique shuffle:

Read More »

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We don’t need ‘The Rock’ to save the day, we just need to ‘Get Social’!

Mobile applications and sensors are commonly used to monitor traffic, health & wellness and incidents such as road traffic accidents.  But what about the threat of catastrophic disasters such as earthquakes where the loss of life can be unprecedented?

The sun drenched, Californian city of Pasadena is known for hosting the annual Rose Bowl Football game.  It is also located near the infamous San Andreas Fault (SAF).  If you paid attention in geography class at school or if you’ve seen the latest Hollywood blockbuster, ‘San Andreas’  starring ‘The Rock’, you’ll know that this means the city is at risk from earthquakes.

The Rock

Can ‘The Rock’ save the day?

It is suspected that one day California will be hit by The ‘Big One’.  This is a hypothetical earthquake of a magnitude ~8 or greater that is expected to happen along the SAF. Such an earthquake will result in devastation to human civilization within about 50-100 miles of the fault in urban areas such as Palm Springs, Los Angeles and San Francisco. No one knows when ‘The Big One’ will happen because scientists cannot predict earthquakes with any precision.  However, technology is providing them with data that in time will give Californian residents a fighting chance of survival.

Seismometers are highly sensitive instruments that detect seismic activity that occur before earthquakes strike. Unfortunately, due to their cost, the number of seismometers in California are limited.  The Southern California Seismic Network operates just 350 seismic stations and the Northern California Seismic Network has a further 412.

With the threat of ‘The Big One’ forever looming, The Caltec Institute in Pasedena embarked on a project to determine how they could provide a blanket of cheap Seismometers across the state.

Their answer? Smartphones! Yes, really!

Research conducted proved that accelerometers found in most smartphones are sensitive enough to detect large earthquakes.

Creating the ‘Community Seismic Network’ – Caltech is encouraging residents to opt-in to turn their smart phones into mobile seismometers by simply downloading an application called ‘Crowdshake’ onto their android device.

Caltec have said: “if only 1 percent of users in the area opted into the scheme, that few hundred seismometers would be augmented by several hundred thousand additional sensors giving sufficient intelligent processing”.

So how does it work?

Upon downloading the mobile application an algorithm executes in the background of the mobile device.  Algorithms are monitored and when seismic motion is detected by the accelerometer, a message is sent to a Cloud Fusion Center which includes the time, location, and estimated amplitude of the data that triggered the message.

Mobile seisomemetres

The benefit of the Community Seismic Network is huge.  A dense, city-wide seismic network could be used to detect earthquakes rapidly after they start and measure the strength of shaking accurately as it unfolds.

What would this mean to Californian residents? Well, it will enable immediate action to be taken to prevent damage, such as stopping trains and elevators, stabilizing the power grid, and deploying emergency teams.

This is an astounding example of the Internet of Everything! People, data, process and things coming together to save lives in real-time!

Whilst the application is currently a research prototype and not yet fully deployed for public use, Caltech anticipate that the capability of real-time early warning may convince users to download and install the application when it is readily available.

So quite simply, it pays to ‘get social’ especially on those days when ‘The Rock’ isn’t around the save the day!

Get-Social

 

Reference:

The Next Big One: Detecting Earthquakes and other Rare Events from Community-based Sensors.

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We’re Ready for Orlando (And I Don’t Mean Disney)!

Did you know…

  • There are so many attractions in Orlando that it would take the average traveler 67 full days to experience every one of them?
  • If you ate breakfast, lunch, and dinner at a different Orlando restaurant every meal, it would take you five years to eat at all 5,300+ of them?

We’ve packed our bags and we’re heading to Orlando next week. It’s not for the attractions or lunch buffets. It is for another exciting year at InfoComm. This year promises to be our best showcase yet and we hope you’ll stop by and visit us.

Experience delightful, user-first collaboration with Cisco Collaboration technology from Red Dot-awarded video systems to powerful integrator video components and flexible infrastructure models that make deployment easier, faster, and more affordable. We’ll showcase a full complement of video and unified communications solutions to show you how collaboration can be nearly effortless for companies of all sizes.

This year’s highlights include: Read More »

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Collaboration Notes from Cisco Live: Wednesday Wrap-Up

You know it’s a star-studded day when the morning starts with Rebecca Jacoby, the afternoon features Rowan Trollope and Jonathan Rosenberg, and the night ends with Steven Tyler and Joe Perry wearing this year’s freshly minted Cisco Live hat. Yes, Wednesday was a busy day.

If you somehow missed it, the word of the week is exponential. It’s a strong message in every major session I’ve attended — and for good reason. Thinking, development, change — we all know the basics of moving forward, but it’s adding exponential in front that will make the difference in your ability to disrupt yourselves, your markets, and your competitors. The exponential component is really what’s required to advance and succeed in the digital age. It’s simple math, really.

Read on for: Rowan Trollope and Jonathan Rosenberg, Industry Keynote, Intercloud, Innovation Session, Customer Appreciation Event, Customer Connection Program, Keep Up-to-Date Beyond Cisco Live  Read More »

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